Fibonacci was the name used by the Italian mathematician Leonardo Pisano from 1170 to 1250. The son of Guilielmo and a member of the Bonacci family, Fibonacci sometimes used the name Bigollo, which may mean good-for-nothing traveller. Fibonacci was a genius ahead of his day. He was a brilliant mathematician who wrote several books. He is most well known today for the sequence 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55, etc, which figures prominently in what is today known as Fibonaccian mathematics, and has a quarterly scholarly journal devoted to it. Until that time the Western world had used the Roman numeral system, Fibonacci introduced the West to the modern decimal system, imported from Babylonia. The Fibonacci number sequence is studied as part of number theory and hase applications in the counting of mathematical objects such as sets, permutations and sequences, as well as in computer science.
It was Fibonacci's belief that Arabic numerals were simpler and more efficient than Roman numerals. He traveled throughout the Mediterranean world and studied under the major Arab mathematicians returning to Pisa around 1200. In the year 1202, at the age of 32,Fibonacci published his findings in The Book of Calculation. In it he showed the practical importance of this new number system by applying it to commercial accounting and to conversion of weights and measures. He also showed how to apply it to the calculation of interest, money changing, and many other applications. The book was well received and had a profound impact on European thought. Despite this, the use of decimal numbers did not become widespread until the invention of printing almost three hundred years later. Fibonacci was honored to be a guest of the Holy Roman Emperor Frederick II who was a fan of mathematics and science. In the year 1240 his city, the Republic of Pisa honored him by paying him a salary from the city.
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